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The new Galore Park 11+ English range
By Natalie at Galore Park
16 Jan
Because there are now several types of English test at 11+, Galore Park has broadened the scope of the questions, selection of papers and difficulty in a new range of titles to support children taking both traditional 11+ tests and online adaptive pre-tests.
 
The range comprises the following titles.
Each of these titles has been designed to cater for the needs of children taking:
  • pre-tests delivered on screen
  • 11+ entrance exams in different formats, including GL (Granada Learning), CEM (Centre for Evaluation and Monitoring) and ISEB (Independent Schools Examination Board)
  • 11+ entrance exams created specifically for individual independent schools.
Following a two-year research period, the 11+ English revision and practice titles cover the wide range of content examined by all major test setters, including bespoke tests created for independent schools. The books cover content taught across the National Curriculum Programme of Study for Key Stage 2, the ISEB Common Entrance 11+ syllabuses and aspects of the Key Stage 3 curriculum (where relevant).
 
Variations in test styles are included and, in addition, all testing content is carefully structured and reviewed so that weight is given to the most frequently occurring questions and the difficulty level increases to meet the needs of the most challenging entrance exams.

 
This approach is particularly helpful for children applying for more than one school and, therefore, preparing for more than one style of test, since the consistent teaching approach within the series supports them through their entire 11+ experience.
 

Understanding the range

 
The English range is designed for short periods of study consolidated by frequent testing. This can be in a classroom situation or in private study.

Working through the range using the six-point 11+ learning journey below – from Revision Guide to Workbooks and finally to Practice Papers – enables pupils to:

1) refresh the essential skills in spelling, punctuation and grammar that are needed to excel in comprehension and writing

2) review and develop their comprehension and writing skills

3) increase their familiarity with exam-style questions through testing

4) develop skills in reading questions carefully to ensure answers are focused and accurate

5) tackle the most challenging questions with confidence

6) improve accuracy and competence in basic skills and excellence in writing, through practice.

Answers to spelling, punctuation, grammar and comprehension questions are fully explained; guidance grids and model writing samples are provided to enable children to self-assess their writing for further discussion.
 

Revision Guide

Steps 1 to 6 of the learning journey are covered in the 11+ English Revision Guide see the numbers in red below.
 
  • Divided into three sections, the book begins by consolidating essential spelling, punctuation and grammar (SPAG) skills, and providing examples of different text types. This knowledge can then be applied when working through the detailed review of comprehension questions and guidance for developing writing skills in the following workbook and practice papers two sections. 1,2                                                                                                                              
  • Most topics are covered in one- or two-page sections for 30-minute periods of study and for ease of reference. (Learning Ladders* are used throughout to help chart progress graphically.)   1, 2
  • A consistent structure on all learning spreads provides a familiar learning path.
  • Train: straightforward questions introducing the skill.
  • Test: timed exam-style questions give an indication of whether the skill is mastered.Where a number of questions are provided, the last question will generally be more challenging  1,2,3          
  • Timed tests at the end of each section consolidate the reviewed skills and give practice in working under timed conditions. These are based on a standard 11+ test.  3, 4
  • Sample 11+ tests at the end of the book in SPAG, comprehension and composition (these are challenging tests with standard timings) provide children with an authentic test experience. Although most schools will not set a SPAG test, these skills will be tested through writing composition and may occasionally come up sporadically as questions in comprehension papers, so all children are encouraged to complete them. Standard and multiple-choice tests are provided to support children taking the pre-test as well as paper-based 11+ tests.  3, 4, 5, 6
 
*The Galore Park Learning Ladders are a motivational tool to chart progress through the skills in both writing and comprehension. They are also used to illustrate how these areas connect and enable children to develop skills in both reviewing texts and completing complex writing tasks as they ‘step’ up the ladder.

Workbooks

The four English workbooks (Grammar and Punctuation, Spelling and Vocabulary, Reading and Comprehension and Writing) support children through steps 1 to 6 of the learning journey, with 25 activities (50 smaller activities in Spelling and Vocabulary) in each book. These titles are designed to develop skills across all areas of English and build exam confidence.
  • Guidance and tips within each book reinforce knowledge and practice in working with different forms of writing.  1, 2
  • Bold titles and a familiar structure of questions in each book are designed for short bursts of focused practice.  3, 4
  • All titles feature a range of exercises, many of which are challenging, to build children’s confidence, competence and develop excellence in a range of writing techniques. 4, 5, 6


Practice Papers

Both 11+ English Practice Papers 1 and 11+ English Practice Papers 2 include 12 model tests, some covering SPAG, and all including comprehension and composition papers for final exam preparation. These titles concentrate on steps 3 to 6 of the learning journey.
 
Children are advised to work through each of the tests in order, to experience the widest range of question formats and approaches to writing tasks.
 
  • Exam style (e.g. CEM, GL, ISEB, advanced independent) is indicated before each test. The variety of length, format, range of questions and speed are all representative of the test being replicated.
  • Multiple-choice and standard versions of tests ensure variation in answering styles, especially useful if children are applying to more than one school where different styles of paper are given, with multiple-choice being helpful for children taking on-screen adaptable pre-tests.
  • The speed of tests varies through the course of the books – a factor that is particularly relevant for CEM-style 11+ and online pre-tests.
  • Tests increase in difficulty as the children work through the books to prepare them for the most demanding independent school entrance exams.
 
Galore Park has worked with independent and grammar schools, teachers, test writers and specialist authors to produce this comprehensive new range. The complete series also covers mathematics, verbal reasoning, non-verbal reasoning and science. For further details about question content, teaching approach and all other questions relating to the new 11+ range, please email:
marketing@galorepark.co.uk.

 

Tags: 11+, 11+ English, English, pre-test

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